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The reason this blog is called "Iceman for Christ" is I was a member of Navel Mobile Construction Battalion that complete construction of the South Pole Station in 1974. At that time there was only one priest in Antarctica and I was asked by him to give the eucharistic to my fellow Catholics at a protestant service celebrated by the Battalion Chaplin on Sundays. At that time only priestly consecrated hands could give the eucharist. There were not eucharist ministers at that time. I was given permission by a letter from the bishop to handled our Lord. Years later I was reading the bible and read "and you shall take me to the ends of the earth." I reflected on it for a second and thought Yes, been there done that. Be not afraid and serve Christ King. Greater is HE; than he who is in the world.

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ST. SEBASTIAN-PENGUIN DAY 

Psalm 90, Verse 11

Who comprehends the strength of your anger? Your wrath matches the FEAR it inspires.

This is the prayer of Moses: The Man of God who furthers states, “Teach us to count our days aright, that we may gain wisdom of heart.” Men often throw away their time and forget their life with or without God will be an eternity. Remember “Leaders don’t kill time, they execute it,” says John Maxwell. Saint Benedict recognize the importance of being a workman for the Lord in his phrase, “Ora et Labora’, which translates to the prayer of the hours and work. Moses finishes this psalm in verse 17 with: “May the favor of the Lord our God be ours. Prosper the work of our hands! Prosper the work of our hands”! Notice the double emphasis on work of our hands. This week focus on good works and humility. 

We know that our work is important but is our leisure just as important?

One ponders this question with the recent dust up caused by football players refusing to stand for the National Anthem. I question is this a violation of church and state under the constitution? Afterall isn’t Football our national religion?

The Rise of Sports and the Decline of the Church[1]

Super Bowl XLVIII may have been a bust as a football game, but it was a blockbuster as a cultural event. The telecast of the event attracted a record 111.5 million viewers, making it the most-watched television event of all-time. That record will most likely be eclipsed by the next Super Bowl, and the trajectory shows no signs of dissipating. America takes its sports seriously, and Americans take football with the most seriousness of them all. In a real sense, big-time sports represent America’s new civic religion, and football is its central sacrament. The relationship between sports and religion in America has always been close, and it has often been awkward. The “muscular Christianity” of a century ago has given way to a more recent phenomenon: the massive growth of involvement in sports at the expense of church activities and involvements. About fifteen years ago, the late John Cardinal O’Connor, then the Roman Catholic Archbishop of New York, lamented the fact that Little League Baseball was taking his altar boys away on Sundays. “Why is it religion that must always accommodate?” asked the Archbishop. “Why must Little League and soccer league games be scheduled on Sunday mornings? Why create that conflict for kids or for their parents? Sports are generally considered good for kids. Church is good for kids.” The Archbishop blamed secularization for this invasion of Sunday: “This is the constant erosion, the constant secularization of our culture, that I strongly believe to be a serious mistake.” So the cardinal took on Little League and the youth soccer league in New York City. And he lost. Nevertheless, he was right about the problem. The massive rise of sports within the culture is a sign and symptom of the secularization of the larger society. New evidence for this pattern comes from academics Chris Beneke and Arthur Remillard in an essay recently published in The Washington Post. Writing with Super Bowl XLVIII in view, Beneke and Remillard note: “American sports fans have forged imperishable bonds with the people, places and moments that define their teams. You might even call this attachment religious. But that would be unfair—to sports.” In other words, the attachment many Americans now have to sports teams far exceeds attachment to religious faith—any religious faith.

The two academics then make their central case:

“While teams and fans are building powerful, cohesive communities—think Red Sox Nation or the legions of University of Alabama faithful who greet one another with ‘Roll Tide’—churches are losing followers. According to a 2012 survey by researchers at the University of California at Berkeley and Duke University, 20 percent of Americans ‘claimed they had no religious preference,’ compared with an unaffiliated population of 8 percent in 1990. Roughly two out of three Americans, a 2012 Pew report noted, are under the impression that religion is losing influence in the country.” That impression is growing because it is true to the facts. Religion is losing ground and losing influence in American society. The fastest-growing segment of the American public in terms of religious identification is the “nones,” designating those who identify with no religious tradition at all. At the same time, a religious dedication to sports has been growing. While correlation does not prove causation, the links between these two developments are haunting. Interestingly, Beneke, who teaches history at Bentley University, and Remillard, who teaches religious studies at St. Francis University, document the dramatic increase in the percentage of Americans who consider themselves to be sports fans. Just a half-century ago, only three in ten Americans identified themselves as sports fans. Fast forward to 2012 and the percentage is greater than 60 percent. At the same time, church attendance and other marks of religious activity (especially the number of hours each week devoted to church activities) have fallen sharply. Beneke and Remillard describe the current picture in vivid terms: “Modern sports stadiums function much like great cathedrals once did, bringing communities together and focusing their collective energy. This summer, the Archdiocese of New York is expected to outline plans to close or merge some of its 368 parishes; 26 Catholic schools in the archdiocese have ceased operation. By contrast, the city and the state of New Jersey spent hundreds of millions to build new baseball and football stadiums.” Cardinal O’Connor would no doubt see the pattern and lament it, but a good many evangelical Christians seem both unmoved and unconcerned. The problem is quite ecumenical in this respect. The youth minister or pastor at your local evangelical church is almost sure to tell you the same story. Team sports activities or other forms of organized athletics have taken many evangelical families away from church activities. Many children and adolescents know very little of church involvements, but they and their parents (and often their grandparents as well) would not miss a scheduled practice, much less a game or competitive event. The same is increasingly true of spectator sports. Beneke and Remillard conclude by asserting that “when it comes to the passionate attachments that sustain interest and devotion, it’s time to acknowledge that sports have gained the edge. And they show no sign of relinquishing the lead.” In the larger society, this is most certainly the case. This dramatic shift could only come to pass if the larger culture has been largely secularized. In this case, secularization does not necessarily mean the disappearance of religious faith, but merely the demotion of religious involvement and identification to a level lower than those granted to sports. Americans may not know who their god is, but you can be sure most know who their team is.

Whose team is yours? [2]

Let us never forget that Satan does his utmost to destroy mankind. In a thousand ways he plots and wars against God and tries to usurp His throne. On this subject, the following instruction given by Our Blessed Mother to Venerable Mary d' Agreda, is worth quoting: "My daughter," she says, "by no power of human words wilt thou in this mortal life ever succeed in describing the evil of Lucifer and his demons against men, or the malice, astuteness, deceits and ruses, with which, in his wrath, he seeks to bring them into sin and later on to eternal torments. He tries to hinder all good works . . . All the malice of which his own mind is capable, he attempts to inject into souls. Against these attacks, God provides admirable protection if men will only co-operate and correspond on their part." Among the means provided by God for our protection, is the ready recourse we may have at all times to the strengthening Blood of Christ. "This Blood," declares St. John Chrysostom, "has the power to drive away the evil spirits and to draw to our side the good angels, aye, the King of Angels, and to blazen the way to Heaven." Fortified by the Precious Blood, let us place ourselves under the leadership of St. Michael and unfurl everywhere the banner of our Faith, without fear of godlessness. If Satan tries to induce us to sin, and promises honors, riches, happiness on conditions that we omit a good work, or commit an evil deed, let us ever oppose the tempter with the energetic words: Who is like unto God? God is my only treasure, my highest Good, His Blood is upon me, and "though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I shall fear no evil." If in time of temptation, we have the courage to rebuke the evil one and call upon the assistance of our leader, St. Michael, the enemy will surely be put to flight. But if we wish to enjoy the great Archangel's protection, we must also imitate his virtues, particularly his humility and his zeal for God's glory.

 

"O great St. Michael, take us 'neath thy shield, Thy mighty power in our favor wield!"

St. Sebastian[3] 

The name of Sebastian is enveloped in a wreath of legends. By birth he was Milanese. Perhaps the persecutor of Christians had left Milan, or had not yet arrived, or had become momentarily more tolerant. Sebastian believed that here there was no opportunity for combat, or that it had already passed. So, he went to Rome, the scene of bitter opposition arising from the Christians' zeal for the faith. There he suffered; there he gained the crown." St. Sebastian was widely venerated during the Middle Ages, particularly as a protector against the plague. Paul the Deacon relates that in 670 a great pestilence at Rome ceased when an altar was dedicated in his honor. The Breviary account of the saint is highly legendary; in part it reads: "Diocletian tried by every means to turn Sebastian from the faith of Christ. After all efforts had proven fruitless, he ordered him tied to a post and pierced with arrows. When everyone thought him dead, a devout woman named Irene arranged for his burial during the night; finding him still alive, she cared for him in her own house. After his recovery he appeared again before Diocletian and boldly rebuked him for his wickedness. Enraged by the saint's sharp words, the emperor ordered him scourged until he expired. (Remember that in our Lords scourging; He paid particularly for the sins of the flesh) His body was thrown into a sewer."

Things to Do:[4]

·         Read a longer account of St. Sebastian's life.

·         St. Sebastian's Day is marked in Sicily and in Kerala, India with huge celebrations. Try a Sicilian or Kerala dish for dinner tonight in honor of the saint.

·         If you have an athlete in your family teach them the prayer to St. Sebastian.

Litany of St. Sebastian[5]

Lord, have mercy on us!         Christ, have mercy on us!

Lord, have mercy on us!        

Christ hear us!             Christ, graciously hear us!

God, the Father of heaven,                                         Have mercy on us!

God, the Son, Redeemer of the world,                       Have mercy on us!

God, the holy Ghost,                                                               Have mercy on us!

Holy Trinity, one God,                                                           Have mercy on us!

Holy Mary, Queen of Martyrs,                                                           Pray for us.

Saint Sebastian,                                                                                               Pray for us.

Invincible Martyr,                                                                               Pray for us.

Knight, noble by birth and fame,                                            Pray for us.

Glorious warrior and martyr of Christ,                                   Pray for us.

Patron and mirror of Christian soldiers,                                 Pray for us.

Despiser of the world,                                                                         Pray for us.

Conqueror of Satan,                                                                            Pray for us.

Comfort of the dying,                                                                         Pray for us.

Consoler of the afflicted,                                                                    Pray for us.

Announcer of the word of God,                                              Pray for us.

Protector and Patron of countries and cities,              Pray for us.

Saint Sebastian, perfect in virtue and wisdom,          Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, lover of God and men,                         Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, might in word and work,                                  Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, who didst strengthen the Christians in torments and death,                                                                                                                            Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, who didst fortify those wavering in their faith,

Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, who didst encourage the doubting to persevere to the end,                                                                                                                             Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, who, in flamed with love of God, didst despise the pains inflicted by the tyrant,                                                                   Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, surrounded by celestial light,                           Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, instructed by the holy Angels,                         Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, giving speech to the dumb,                              Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, who for defending the truth wast wounded by arrows,                                                                                                                                   Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, who wast put to death with clubs,                    Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, who wast crowned with eternal glory,             Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, great intercessor for us with God,                    Pray for us.

St. Sebastian, endowed with power from God to avert pestilence and all contagious diseases,                                                                    Pray for us.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world: Spare us, O Lord!

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world: Graciously hear us, O Lord!

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world: Have mercy on us, O Lord! Christ, hear us! Christ, graciously hear us!

Let us pray. Mercifully look on our weakness, O almighty God; since the weight of our own evil deeds bears us down, may the glorious intercession of Thy blessed martyr Sebastian be our protection Through our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son, Who with Thee and the Holy Ghost liveth and reigneth, one God, world without end. R. Amen.

Penguin Awareness Day[6] was created to celebrate everybody’s favorite zoo animal! Find out more about penguins, explore what others have to say about penguins, why not visit your local zoo to share the penguin love! You don’t have to wait until Penguin Awareness Day, because penguins can be loved all year long!


 

Fitness Friday

 

Recognizing that God, the Father created man on Friday the 6th day I propose in this blog to have an entry that shares on how to recreate and renew yourself in strength, mind, soul and heart.

 

25 Ways to Re-Create[7]

 

·         Saltwater Fishing-As the title indicates, saltwater fishing takes place out at sea giving fishermen the opportunity to catch large and exotic fishes such as the Marlin. The big drawback to this activity is that you have to have access to a boat (either own, know someone who does, or rent), and own special fishing gear that can handle large catches.

·         Bird Watching- With about 10,000 species of birds and only a handful of people who can claim having seen over 7000 of them, bird watching is become a popular recreation activity. It’s believed that bird watching is an expression of the male hunting instinct while others links it with the male tendency for “systemizing”. Either way, bird watching is a great, safe way to enjoy nature.

·         Skiing- Also known as downhill skiing, Alpine skiing began as a club sport in 1861 at Kiandra in Australia. Today, most alpine skiing occurs at ski resorts with ski lifts that transport skiers up the mountain.

·         Snowboarding-An American born sport that is getting worldwide attention, snowboarding was developed in the 1960’s and became part of the Olympics in 1998. Like any other extreme sport, snowboarding does present risks of injury (especially for new participants), in fact, you are twice as likely to get injured while snowboarding than Alpine skiing.

·         Overnight Backpacking- Not to be confused with backpacking for traveling purposes, overnight backpacking describes a multi-day hike that involves camping. Aside from the health benefits, backpacking allows adventurers to enjoy remote places that are usually un-accessible by any other means.

·         Snowshoeing-Snowshoeing is a great way to enjoy the outdoors during winter months while maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle. In fact, as of 2006, at least 500 American schools have started offering snowshoe programs in their physical education curriculum to help combat obesity.

·         Skateboarding-Skateboarding appeals to people all over the world. In a 2002 report, it was found that there were 18.5 million skateboarders in the world. 85 percent of those who had used a board in the last year of the poll were under the age of 18.

·         Trail running-An increasingly popular sport, trail runners have increased from 4.5 million to more than 6 million in the United States alone between 2006 and 2012.

·         Snorkeling-If you want to check out an underwater world without the mess of complicated equipment and tanks, snorkeling is for you. Not only is it simpler than scuba diving, but cheaper as well since you are not required to have a license and or permit to dive.

·         Bowhunting- Unlike hunting with a rifle, Bowhunting places the hunter in closer proximity to its prey and is more physical (in that you burn more calories by using a bow rather than firing a gun). This activity entices many new participants; however, it is a controversial sport due to the fact that animals tend to die slowly when struck by an arrow.

·         Cross-Country Skiing-Considered to be one of the most grueling endurance sports out there, cross country skiing promises to test your fitness. If you are looking for a sport that burns the most calories per hour, this is it.

·         Wake Boarding-No waves? No problem. Wake boarding makes up for the lack of waves with a boat by dragging you along. This activity is relatively safe, popular, and will definitely keep you fit if done consistently.

·         Fly Fishing-A perfect activity for enjoying the outdoors, fly fishing requires some technical skill (mainly casting techniques) but these are relatively easy to learn.

·         Sailing-Probably one the most romantic outdoor activity on this list, sailing captivates the imagination and offers participants a chance for a relaxing trip on the seas. The only downfall to this activity is the price of a sailboat.

·         BMX Biking-BMX bicycling is an impressive sport to watch, which is probably why so many people attempt to get into it. If you are thinking of doing the same, be warned, you can’t fear getting hurt as falls, scrapes, and fails are common.

·         Surfing-A challenging sport, surfing definitely requires some skill development. Nevertheless, many people attempt this dynamic sport.

·         Scuba Diving-With the opportunity to experience a rare and stunning encounter with a world outside the norm, it’s not surprising why so many people try out scuba diving. Just be careful as scuba diving can get a bit expensive and certification is required for solo divers.

·         Climbing-The danger factor should be obvious with this one. Nevertheless, climbing appeals to many first-time participants and many more find it to be a great outdoor activity. If you’re thinking about giving this a try, I suggest starting out in an indoor climbing facility.

·         White Water Rafting-With six grades of intensity, white water rafting appeals to veterans and novices alike. With that said, if you want to try rafting for the first time, be sure to stick to the lower grades since white water rafting can be dangerous.

·         Sea Kayaking-Kayaking in the sea will allow you to enjoy an active lifestyle while gliding through open waters. It’s a relatively easy sport to get into and for the most part safe (unlike the next item on our list).

·         White Water Kayaking-A surprisingly popular activity for first time practitioners, white water kayaking is a pretty intense sport. If you’re not careful, you can end up seriously hurt, or worse…dead. Nevertheless, 35% of first-time participants indicate that this is their sport of choice.

·         Adventure Racing-You just never know what you will get with adventure racing. As the name suggests, the ‘adventure’ can consist of swimming, running, climbing, kayaking, etc. There usually is no time limit and some races can even last days.

·         Triathlon Consisting of three continuous and sequential endurance disciplines (running, bicycling, and swimming), a triathlon does not require a particularly high level of skills per se. However, the training for such an event can be grueling.

·         Windsurfing-An engaging combination of sailing and surfing, windsurfing takes the #2 spot on our list. If you’re itching to try this sport, know that it does take some patience and perseverance to become proficient. You must develop your balance and core stability; acquire a basic understanding of sailing theory; and learn a few techniques.

·         Stand Up Paddling-Stand up paddling (SUP) is the #1 activity for new time users. Similar to surfing in that you stand on a board. In SUP, waves are not required, and you can enjoy a tranquil stroll while enjoying a total body workout.

 

Catechism of the Catholic Church

PART THREE: LIFE IN CHRIST

SECTION ONE-MAN'S VOCATION LIFE IN THE SPIRIT

                                                CHAPTER TWO-THE HUMAN COMMUNION

Article 3-SOCIAL JUSTICE

I. Respect for the Human Person

1929 Social justice can be obtained only in respecting the transcendent dignity of man. the person represents the ultimate end of society, which is ordered to him:

What is at stake is the dignity of the human person, whose defense and promotion have been entrusted to us by the Creator, and to whom the men and women at every moment of history are strictly and responsibly in debt.

1930 Respect for the human person entails respect for the rights that flow from his dignity as a creature. These rights are prior to society and must be recognized by it. They are the basis of the moral legitimacy of every authority: by flouting them, or refusing to recognize them in its positive legislation, a society undermines its own moral legitimacy. If it does not respect them, authority can rely only on force or violence to obtain obedience from its subjects. It is the Church's role to remind men of good will of these rights and to distinguish them from unwarranted or false claims.

1931 Respect for the human person proceeds by way of respect for the principle that "everyone should look upon his neighbor (without any exception) as 'another self,' above all bearing in mind his life and the means necessary for living it with dignity." No legislation could by itself do away with the fears, prejudices, and attitudes of pride and selfishness which obstruct the establishment of truly fraternal societies. Such behavior will cease only through the charity that finds in every man a "neighbor," a brother.

1932 The duty of making oneself a neighbor to others and actively serving them becomes even more urgent when it involves the disadvantaged, in whatever area this may be. "As you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me."

1933 This same duty extends to those who think or act differently from us. the teaching of Christ goes so far as to require the forgiveness of offenses. He extends the commandment of love, which is that of the New Law, to all enemies. Liberation in the spirit of the Gospel is incompatible with hatred of one's enemy as a person, but not with hatred of the evil that he does as an enemy.

Friday Fish

This shrimp in marsala sauce can be served over pasta or rice. This is a delicious Friday night dinner.

DIRECTIONS

Dredge shrimp in flour; sauté in oil 3 minutes. Drain shrimp, reserving oil. Add wine to shrimp; simmer 5 minutes or until shrimp is nearly done. Add reserved oil, tomato paste mixed with water, scallion, salt, and pepper; simmer 5 minutes longer or until shrimp is done. Stir in lemon juice. Makes 4 servings.

Recipe Source: Cook's Blessings, The by Demetria Taylor, Random House, New York, 1965


Life First[1] 9 Days for Life day four

 

INTENTION-May every father of a preborn child lovingly support the mother of his child in welcoming new life. 

PRAYERS-Our Father, 3 Hail Mary’s, Glory Be 

REFLECTION-Fatherhood has its origins in God, who chose to reveal Himself to us as Our Father, sending his only Son for the sake of our salvation. Fathers therefore have a special role “in revealing and in reliving on earth the very fatherhood of God” (Familiaris consortio 25). Fathers are called to exhibit “generous responsibility for the life conceived under the heart of the mother” (FC 25). They are uniquely entrusted with the protection and defense of both mother and child and, in this way, in safeguarding the sanctity of human life. 

As evidenced in our world today, the role of the father “is of unique and irreplaceable importance” (FC 25). Often women choose abortion because they do not have the support of the child’s father, or—even worse—the father of the child pressures her to make the decision to abort. At the same time, it is important to acknowledge with compassion that men can also be overwhelmed by an unexpected pregnancy and that society increasingly tells them that they should have no say in their children’s lives. In the face of these false messages, we pray that fathers of preborn children will find courage in the example of Saint Joseph—who embraced the role of father amid difficult circumstances—and offer loving, life-affirming support to the mothers of their children. 

ACTS OF REPARATION (Choose one.) 

·         Give up sleeping on your pillow—or even your bed—tonight. Offer this small sacrifice for the intention that fathers of preborn children will courageously answer their call to support both mother and child. 

·         Pray a decade of the Rosary for all fathers of preborn children, that through her intercession, Our Lady may inspire in them the virtues of Saint Joseph. 

·         Offer some other sacrifice, prayer, or act of penance that you feel called to do for today’s intention. 

ONE STEP FURTHER-Research continues to show that one of the top reasons a woman chooses abortion is due to a lack of financial resources. Read "Poverty and Abortion: A Vicious Cycle," which explores the connections between abortion and poverty, and how the absence of fathers contributes to this ongoing cycle.


[1]http://www.usccb.org/about/pro-life-activities/january-roe-events/nine-days-of-prayer-penance-and-pilgrimage.cfm


Daily Devotions

·         Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Today's Fast: Reparations for offenses and blasphemies against God and the Blessed Virgin Mary

·         Dolly Parton's birthday-when I was stationed in KY took the family to Dollywood-we had a good time but froze.




·         Religion in the Home for Preschool: January

·         Carnival Time begins in Catholic Countries.

·         Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood

·         Iceman’s 40 devotion

·         Universal Man Plan

·         Operation Purity

·         Rosary



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